14 militants, 6 soldiers killed in S Waziristan

Islamabad: Fresh heavy fighting erupted in Pakistan's lawless South Waziristan after a brief lull, as 14 militants and six soldiers, including an officer were killed in intense clashes.

Resuming their advance, troops secured several villages around the Taliban strongholds of Makeen and Razmak as militants continued their bombing campaign in other areas of the restive NWFP.

An explosion at the office of an NGO in Peshwar left one person seriously injured today, though Pakistani officials said the exact nature of the blast is yet to be determined.

In South Waziristan, Lakki Ghundi, located near the rebel base of Makeen, was secured "after an intense battle," the military said.

Fourteen Taliban fighters and six soldiers were killed and four soldiers were injured during the operation.

This was the first major clash reported from South Waziristan after a relative lull over the past few days.

Troops are currently consolidating their positions in the region after quickly capturing several key Taliban bases and strongholds.

However, the Taliban have claimed they have only pulled back as part of a strategy and are preparing to launch counter-attacks on soldiers who have moved deeper into South Waziristan.